Freedom of navigation no excuse of military drills in South China Sea: expert

Source: XinhuaEditor: Dong Zhaohui
2016-07-19 19:18


Zhang Junshe, senior research fellow of the Military and Academic Institute of the Chinese Navy

SINGAPORE, July 19 (Xinhua) -- Freedom of navigation should not be the excuse of the United States and other countries' military exercises in the South China Sea, an expert said here on Tuesday.

Zhang Junshe, senior research fellow of the Military and Academic Institute of the Chinese Navy, told a press briefing that around 100,000 vessels sail through the South China Sea every year, none has made complains regarding freedom of navigation.

In the press briefing following Monday's Think Tank Seminar on South China Sea and Regional Cooperation and Development, Zhang said the U.S. deployed heavy military power in the South China Sea, upgrading tension rather than "maintaining peace and stability."

"Countries outside the region could stir up tension and say farewell, but the consequences will fall on parties really concerned," said the expert.

He reminded certain countries in the South China Sea of the recently released investigation report on the Iraq war, saying kowtowing too much to the U.S. is proved to be dangerous.

A long-awaited report by former British civil servant John Chilcot released earlier this month revealed the invasion led by the U.S. and Britain was planned on flawed intelligence and lack of adequate preparation for the post-war governance.

The Chinese expert also called on the U.S. and its allies to stop provocative military drills in the region, saying the Chinese military has its right and might to protect the country's sovereignty.

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